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Meghan Markle and Harry under ‘pressure’ as 2020 Archewell figures come to light

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle share first photo of Lilibet

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are to throw “their heart and soul” into their work after it emerged how much their charity Archewell raised in 2020, according to royal commentator Duncan Larcombe. He said: “What we’ll see this year is Harry and Meghan really throwing their heart and soul into achieving what they want to achieve with Archewell because now that the figures for 2020 are in the public domain, a very close eye will be kept on how successful they are this year in promoting and raising the coffers of Archewell.”

Speaking to OK! magazine, the royal author said the publication of the Archewell figures “puts pressure” on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to transform their organisation into a successful force for change and in showing the public they are a “power couple”.

Mr Larcombe referred to the multi-year contracts signed by the Sussexes with Spotify and Netflix in 2020 – which are reported to be worth several million each, although Meghan and Harry have remained tight-lipped on them.

He said: “It’s the kind of publicity that they certainly would not want and the other thing is, if you were to publish similar figures for Harry and Meghan’s private income for the same period, we were lead to believe it is in the tens of millions of pounds.”

He added: “So if their focus has been on having enough money to become financially independent as they said, they’ve achieved that.

“If they really want to prove their authenticity as a power couple doing good then the focus needs to be more one raising money for charity rather than the Sussex family coffers.” 

Express.co.uk has contacted representatives for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex at Archewell for comment on Mr Larcombe’s remarks.

Earlier this week, it was shared American tax returns had revealed Meghan and Harry’s Archewell charity raised less than $50,000 (£36,947) in 2020.

While Archewell was set up in April 2020, a representative for Meghan and Harry said there was no financial activity during that year.

Archewell received its first deposit in early 2021, according to filings seen by the Daily Mail.

Archewell is composed of three branches – the foundation, which is Meghan and Harry’s non-profit platform, Archewell Audio and Archewell Productions – set to release audio and video content produced exclusively for Spotify and Netflix. 

Commenting on the publication of the amount raised by the Archewell Foundation, a spokesperson for Meghan and Harry said: “While Archewell was established in 2020 there was no financial activity during that year, and the documents required for 2021 would be filed at the relevant time.

“The charity is separate from the couple’s companies Archewell Audio and Archewell Productions.

“The spokesperson added that when MWX Foundation was closed down all money was transferred to Harry’s non-profit sustainable travel company Travalyst in line with governing documents.

“The transfer had been closely reviewed by the Charity Commission, which found no breaches of UK charity law.” 

Archewell was created after Sussex Royal, the couple’s now-defunct charity set up in the UK in July 2019.

This organisation, which was born after Meghan and Harry split from the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, was never launched and the process to dissolve it was started after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped down as senior royals in the spring of 2020.

The name of this charity was changed to MWX Foundation while it was being dissolved.

Meghan and Harry first spoke about Archewell in April 2020, after the name of their organisation was discovered in paperwork filed in the US.

At the time, they told the Telegraph: “Before SussexRoyal, came the idea of ‘Arche’ – the Greek word meaning ‘source of action’.

“We connected to this concept for the charitable organisation we hoped to build one day, and it became the inspiration for our son’s name. 

“To do something of meaning, to do something that matters.

“Archewell is a name that combines an ancient word for strength and action, and another that evokes the deep resources we each must draw upon. We look forward to launching Archewell when the time is right.”

Meghan and Harry, who got married in May 2018, officially stepped down as senior royals at the end of March 2020.

This move saw them becoming financially independent from the Sovereign Grant and able to strike profitable deals. 

By becoming non-working royals, the Duke and Duchess could relocate abroad.

They have since established their post-royal life in California.

The Duke and Duchess welcomed their first child, Archie Harrison, in May 2019.

Two years later, last June, they became the parents also of Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana.

The child was born at a Santa Barbara hospital and has yet to leave the US and meet in person her royal relatives across the pond.

The Sussexes shared with the public the baby’s first-ever picture in the run-up to the winter holidays, as part of their Christmas card.     

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